Keywords: scheduler, scheduling, slots, appointments, notes, meetings, personal tutor, tutoring, groups, individual, private, time, office hours, feedback, support

What is it?

The scheduler activity allows you to specify time slots for meetings, which students then choose on Moodle. Staff can in turn record that the student attended, make notes about the meeting - and optionally assign a grade - within the scheduler. The scheduler sends reminders to both students and staff and allows either to cancel the appointment and book another time. The scheduler also support group meeting, where multiple students can sign up at one time. It also allows staff to assign students to attend a meeting at a particular time.

Why use it?

There are lots of reasons to use the scheduler. For example:

Who can use it?

Tutor or Course Administrators can set up a Scheduler and add slots.

Students can then book slots and make notes. 

How do I set one up?

Follow thse simple steps to get a Scheduler set up.

  1. Log into Moodle, go to the course area where you want the Scheduler to appear, and Turn Editing On
  2. In the appropriate Section of the course area, click its Add an Activity menu, from that select Scheduler, then the Add button; the Scheduler settings display.

Let's go through each of the settings in turn.

  1. Name: choose a short distinctive one with the important information up front.
  2. Introduction: this displays for students above where they make their selection and is a good place to give concise, informative instructions.
  3. Role name of the teacher: this might for example be Personal Tutor, or Supervisor.
  4. Mode: if you want to use a single instance of the Scheduler for all subsequent meeting for e.g. the entire year, choose One At A Time, which means that only once an appointment is in the past can students return to choose a future appointment. Otherwise choose One Single Appointment.
  5. Reuse guard time: leave as default.
  6. Default slot duration: set to the number of minutes you want the slots to be (note this will also display to students).
  7. Grade: unless you want to assign marks for the meeting, leave this as No Grade.
  8. Notifications: setting this to Yes will send email notifications and reminders to students and tutors.
  9. The other settings are common to all Moodle activities, so we'll leave them for now.
  10. Scroll down and click the Save And Display button; the front page of the Scheduler displays with some settings to add appointment slots.


Further guidance on the Scheduler module is available from moodledocs.

If you find any inaccurate or missing information you can even update this yourself (it's a communal wiki).

If you have a specific question about the tool please contact the Digital Education team.

Caution

 There are some limitations to the Scheduler, for example:

Examples and case studies

Questions & Answers

Q.What do students do in Scheduler?

A. Students are presented with a list of available slots (slots which have already been booked are not displayed at all). Each student clicks a radio button for her preferred slot (one only), then clicks the Save My Choice button; the slot displays as Booked and (depending on settings) email notices are sent. If a student wants to cancel or choose a different appointment, they can do so via the Drop My Appointments link at the bottom; the slot then displays as free and (again depending on settings) email notices are sent.
 

Q. What do staff see as students book appointments?

A. Staff see student names (with their profile pictures) against each booked slot. If a Group booking is made then the names of each student Group member and their profile pictures are listed against the slot.
 

Q. What about students who don't make a booking?

A. Under the table of slots is a list of students who have not signed up for slots; you can schedule meetings for those students if you need to and notify them by email.

Further information

Adding slots - guidance on adding slots to a Scheduler is available from Moodle Docs.

Staff keeping records - A checkbox in combination with a Save As Seen link allows staff to note that they have seen a given student. Records can be kept by clicking each appointment's respective Cog icon - this displays a form including text fields for:

Please note that both of these fields display to the student who has booked the appointment - i.e. they are not private to staff.

It's possible to export the records as a spreadsheet, but n.b. the export does not include the aforementioned Comments or Notes. However, the annual Moodle snapshot means that a record is kept which can easily be accessed on demand.

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